The Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, Sayyid Amar Al Hakim, expressed his regret for the lost joy of the unified retirement law achievement, by adding paragraphs on the pension of the three presidencies and their vices, as well as special ranks, ministers and deputies; the amendment got round the great effort made to avoid that and violated the religious authority’s opinion and the will of large categories of our people. His Eminence insisted that the Citizen Bloc’s position is clear insomuch as it states that there should be no pension for special ranks, the three presidencies, the deputies and ministers, for they occupy public service positions for a determined period of time. He wondered how can persons who served for a few years be equivalent to people who have spent their entire lives in administrative service, commending at the same time all political blocs and deputies for voting for the law, since it is a major step that makes justice to a large and significant category of the people. His Eminence explained that the paragraph on the pension of the three presidencies, deputies and special ranks has been added to put opposing blocs in an embarrassing situation. He reiterated that the Citizen Bloc supports the public pension law and its effect on the life of retired persons, but it has reservations on the paragraphs that give the three presidencies, their vices, special ranks, deputies and ministers their rights to pension.
This came during the cultural forum held on Wednesday, February 5th, 2014 in his eminence’s office in Baghdad.
 
Hampering the 5 Petro-Dollar Law and Withdrawing the Mandates of the Provinces is a Step Back 
His Eminence considered that the obstacles for the implementation of the 5 petro-dollar law, the attempt to challenge the law of the provincial councils and restrict the mandates, and the attempt to give the 5 petro-dollars at the end of the year, not the end of each month, are all a step back. He wondered when the time is right to develop a unified vision to run the country, calling on the council of ministers to observe these details and withdraw its challenge of the provincial law. Sayyid Al Hakim indicated that the fact that the Prime Minister has not signed the challenge calls for optimism, as he may use his power over the ministers to convince them to withdraw the challenge and ensure all the mandates as per the amended law.
 
Granting Privileges to the Armed Forces is Another Proof that “Our Resisting Anbar” Was Not Launched from Scratch
The Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq expressed his gratitude to the Prime Minister for granting extraordinary privileges to members of the armed forces who are fighting terrorism and takfiri hatred. He renewed his support and blessing of these steps as they raise the morale of the armed forces and make them feel appreciated for their sacrifices in the sake of protecting the nation and the people. His Eminence reiterated that the “Our Resisting Anbar” initiative has underlined the support of the armed forces, considering that grating armed forces privileges is another proof that the initiative was not launched from scratch and that it will remain a cornerstone for countering terrorism. He indicated that the points of the initiatives are being implemented one after the other, because we are the holders of a project not of propagandist stances. We are happy about that, he added, whether with the approval of our initiative and the implementation of its content, or with the media’s attack on it.
 
Some Demands to Turn Districts into Provinces Are Political Overbidding
His Eminence stressed the need to keep elections in the ballot boxes and not allow them to enter and interfere in all life affairs, explaining that Iraq is a democratic country and that elections will take place every four years at the national and provincial levels. He added that democracy, in its essence, is a moving process, underlining that there is a feeling that it has started to interfere in everything, even in crucial decisions. His Eminence indicated that overbidding on democracy is threatening the state’s sustainability, and that the issue of administrative development is very important. He also mentioned that some are talking about a large-scale administrative dissociation awaiting the provinces and about the start of a significant change in the state’s administrative system, as a shift will take place from a region to a district and from a district to a province. His Eminence considered that some of these demands do not have any administrative or scientific foundations, but are part of a political overbidding.
 
The Islamic Revolution in Iran Was Characterized by the Great Values It Holds in its Core  
His Eminence pointed out to the 35th anniversary of the victory of the Islamic revolution in Iran, showing that this Islamic revolution is characterized by the great values it holds in its core because it is the symbol of the victory of values and is indeed the revolution of values. He added that it mainly aimed at first changing the social and popular values, then overthrowing the regime, and this is what made it successful and resistant. He explained that when people change their values, this means that they came into conflict with other values in the society, i.e. those of the Shahanshah Pahlavi  then prevailing, showing that the culture of the westernizing regime of Pahlavi was one of the main causes of the rise of this revolution, reminding that the its main slogan is "neither East nor West but Islamic Republic" and this slogan was not born by coincidence but from the deep essential concepts which ignited the flame of the revolution, and the most important of which the change of social values, asserting that its leader Imam Khomeini (May Allah sanctify his soul) was well aware of this change of the values of the public and that's why he resorted to the public referendum in order to enhance the foundations of the state from choosing the Islamic Republic regime to voting the constitution. He said in every essential matter and serious turning point, Imam Khomeini would say, "go and ask the people", calling for understanding the secret of resistance of this revolution, its continuity and  the enhancing of its goals since it is a revolution of values, not a momentary one, a revolution of radical change, not that of partial changes, a revolution of an entire society, not that of classes, and it exceeded the partiality and put an end to obsolete value, spreading instead its new values in which the people believed. Moreover, he said the Iranian people vanquished itself, the fear in it, the submission to which it was compelled and the obsolete values which were supposed to form its culture. He added that the revolution faced many challenges but resisted and progressed until it achieved victory and its men offered many sacrifices and suffered lots of pains, along with the people who was and still the main protector of this revolution, stressing the importance of learning the hard stages of the revolution and how its leader and men dealt with the attacks their  newborn revolution and young republic faces, making clear that Imam Khomeini (May Allah sanctify his sole) was very understanding and the revolution's men had and still have a great ability of controlling themselves and advancing quietly and such trust and ability the leader and its men had were reflected on the people, and the Islamic revolution managed to cross the sea of challenges and reach the safe shore. On the other hand, he considered the Islamic Republic today as a regional state with international characteristics and a state of values that has a well-defined and ideology and a successful state on the constitutional, legal, economic, scientific and service levels, stating that states may not be built with wishes but by the will of its leaders and peoples, congratulating the Islamic Republic for its leadership, and the Republic of Islam and the Iranian people and its leadership represented by Imam Khamenei (May Allah bless him) of the revolution's anniversary and we wish them more progress and more development.
 
It Is the Responsibility of All of Us to Enable the Moderate Majority in the World to Stand up against the Destructive Ideas
His Eminence reiterated that this World Interfaith Harmony emphasizes the urgent need for communication and harmony between people of different religions in a world filled with extremism and hatred, saying the world today is facing a real challenge represented in those with extremist and deviated thought and this relation between deviation  and extremisms is firmly established for where there is  deviation there is extremism, considering it as the rule that applies to all divine religions and doctrines without exception. No divine religion or doctrine calls for hatred or resentment. He reiterated that it is the responsibility of all of us to enable the moderate majority in the world to stand against this evil wave of destructive, deviated and extremist ideas, calling for strictly and strongly facing the extremist forces, explaining that the spread of the tolerance culture is the most powerful weapon against extremism and the best way to disseminate love and harmony values in societies. He said in this week, the United Nations seek to encourage people to exchange visits to places of worship and to communicate with each other based on human fundamentals without religious or doctrinal obstacles, pointing out to the depth of the social vision of Amir Al Mu'minin, Imam Ali (AS) who said, "people are either brothers in religion or your equal in creation" showing that this is the right and true Islam and this is the systemic spirit of the religion of Muhammad. Furthermore, he maintained that Iraq is one of the biggest religious attractions on the international level and from this land, the prophets and reformers started their journey to diffuse their message and teachings, here the fire was cold and safe on Ibrahim; here Imam Hussein was martyred in order to spread the spirit of tolerance and here the awaited Imam Mahdi (May Allah hasten his advent) will land. He also stressed the need today to be a role model of such harmony since we were the first to introduce it into the divine religions, making clear that those who pretend belonging to Islam have turned into conflicting groups, have deviated from the original doctrine, and have taken takfirism and murdering as their course and doctrine, calling everybody for spreading the values of harmony and tolerance between religions first in their families and then in their societies and to exchange visits between mosques, Husseinyas, churches and temples, considering such simple visits as the key to sow the spirit of tolerance and the culture of harmony between religions and doctrines.
 
Cancer Patients Badly Need Hope and Love
His Eminence said the world today faces a real tragedy because of this malignant disease in terms of infection and symptoms. It is a disease that fills people' hearts with fear and patients' bodies with pain. Albeit such pain, the world is happy today with the great progress it achieved in fighting the disease though it still has a long way to go before this deadly ailment can be eradicated. His Eminence explained that humans are upgrading their knowledge and scientists are now more familiar with causes and types of this disease, and each day, they make one step forward, stressing the need to never lose hope and to instill it into our beloved's hearts for hope is the most important human antidote against the experiments we go through in life. Moreover, he stated that the scientific research is the route of knowledge which remains the key to recovery, but knowledge itself is not enough for patients need affection and warmth, as well as courage and insistence on facing this disease, and we should always remember that there are sick people who need more love and hope than others, calling for bowing before such people and for making this day a day of mercy, love and hope.